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Moscow urges other countries to make information about east Ukraine MH17 crash public

August 10, 2015, 13:40 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with Channel News Asia last week that the investigation into the crash was "not independent, not comprehensive and not truly international"
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Site of MH17 crash in Donbas

Site of MH17 crash in Donbas

© TASS/Mikhail Pochuev

MOSCOW, August 10. /TASS/. Moscow calls on countries that have information about MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine to make it public, Russian Foreign Ministry official spokesman Maria Zakharova told Rossiya 24 TV channel on Monday.

"An informational model is created when one side is accused without direct evidence, without any evidence," Zakharova said speaking about the UN Security Council draft resolution on establishing an international tribunal on MH17 crash in Ukraine. "For a year, an image of an enemy, of absolute evil was being formed which is necessary to be strengthened by creating a model that will be convenient for adjusting the result well-known for someone already a year ago," she added.

"It was unacceptable to put with such an absolutely politicized approach in line with an aggressive informational campaign on vilification of someone and simultaneously on ‘brushing away’ all substantial facts. We are talking about hundreds of people who died. Their fate should not remain a ‘black hole’. Truth should be found, but it is necessary to do it in line with international law, and that is what we are going to do," the diplomat stressed.

"We strongly urge and have been urging for a year that all countries that have any information [on MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine] make it public," Zakharova said.

Zakharova noted that Russia addresses the group of countries "that joined some kind of investigation" of Malaysian Boeing air crash. "Countries in this investigation group have ‘organized’ themselves and started working on the basis of bilateral agreements with Ukraine. It is worth noting that these agreements were not made public. We have a very vague idea of these agreements and what these countries agreed to do to somehow shed light on this tragedy," she concluded.

On July 29, Russia vetoed the United Nations Security Council resolution on establishing an international tribunal to prosecute persons guilty of the MH17 plane crash over Ukraine on July 17, 2014. Eleven Security Council members voted for the Malaysia-proposed draft, which, in fact, was enough for its adoption but Russia used its right of veto. Another three countries, including Angola, Venezuela and China, abstained from voting. Churkin said that the draft resolution was "devoid of any legal and precedent basis" while authors of the draft document preferred political and propagandistic aims to practical tasks.

MH17 crash probe not comprehensive, not truly international

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with Channel News Asia last week that the investigation of the last year's Malaysian Airlines MH17 flight crash in eastern Ukraine was "not independent, not comprehensive and not truly international."

"From the very first days, if not hours, of this incident we have been insisting on very thorough investigation," Lavrov said. "And we were among the initiators of the [UN] Security Council Resolution 2166, which was adopted a bit more than one year ago, on July 21 last year, and which called for through comprehensive independent international investigation under the authority of the International Civil Aviation Organization. The [UN] Security Council pledged to keep this investigation under its permanent review."

The foreign minister reminded that UN Security Council has also "called upon the [UN] Secretary General to provide recommendations as to how the Security Council and the United Nations in general can help and assist the investigation." "And it also called upon all countries who might possess any information to submit it to the investigation procedures," he added.

"Unfortunately, the investigation which was started was not independent, was not comprehensive and was not truly international," Lavrov continued. "Instead of acting under the authority of the International Civil Aviation Organization... Ukraine, Australia, Belgium and the Netherlands signed bilateral agreements between themselves, the substance of which was never made fully known, and they organized a joint criminal investigation team last August. It’s really very strange that Malaysia was invited to join only in December 2014."

The Russian foreign minister admitted that "technical investigation team is broader, they invited several other countries to participate in this technical investigation, including the Russian Federation." "But the information we receive through this representative is not complete. We are being given less than those who started the investigation, which is also subject to questions," he noted.

Lavrov also drew attention to the fact that "the call of the [UN] Security Council upon all countries to submit information which might have any relevance to the incident, was basically responded only by Russia." "We submitted the data from our radar station in the Rostov region, which monitored these skies at that time. The Americans said that they did have images from the satellite but never submitted them, never made them public. The same is true for the Ukrainians who were asked to provide the recordings of the air controllers and between the planes up in the area of the incident," he explained.

"All this, unfortunately, has been repeatedly brought to the attention of the United Nations, of the general public by us. We suggested that the Security Council couple of times should consider the implementation of that resolution and should call upon everyone to strictly abide by its provisions," Lavrov said. "Unfortunately, the proposals were blocked at the [UN] Security Council. And the Secretary General was also asked by us to appoint a special envoy to monitor the investigation. And we also suggested to dispatch a Security Council mission to the area. All this was blocked, and unfortunately, blocked by those very countries who now insist on creating the tribunal," the foreign minister concluded.

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